Thursday, November 14, 2013
Last Saturday I enjoyed meeting up with DDOORN, ANNIEMAC_98, and her husband for an afternoon of Contra and English Country Dancing. None of them had tried it before.
Here's DDORN's post about it:
For an explanation of this kind of dancing, see my blog post from April:
There is also a short YouTube video with people explaining why they like contra dancing and showing them dancing:
Pictured from left to right: ANNIEMAC_98 & her DH, DDOORN, 4A-HEALTHY-BMI (me), and my BF
We started with a lesson in a side room. The caller introduced the newbies to the basics of this form of dancing, walking us through some of the common figures, and assuring everyone that we were here to have fun, not perform.
Then we moved out into the main hall where a live band was waiting. DDOORN took some nice photos which he has shared:
It was a lot of fun to dance with my Spark buddies and watch my worlds collide as I introduced them to dancing friends from Ithaca, Syracuse, and Binghamton. Some friends from Rochester even came!
Although my Spark buddies had to leave when the afternoon session finished, DDOORN suggested a great restaurant for me and a couple of friends to visit: Whole in the Wall. www.wholeinthewall.com
It was fabulous. I would definitely go back there again. I had a lovely salad with grilled chicken and lowfat yogurt dressing, and split a piece of cheesecake three ways with the BF and another dancer.
The other two decided to find out how small they could keep splitting the last bit of it. As you can see, the piece left was pretty much microscopic when they were finished.
Then it was time to go back for three MORE hours of dancing, then carpooling north back home.
As for burning calories, my HR monitor reports the following:
4:46 of dancing in the afternoon session: 880 cal
3:02 of dancing in the evening session: 553 cal
That's a lot of calories. LOL
There is only one thing I’d change if I could about these dances - I'd love it if there were a way to more easily divert myself from the very tasty treats that people bring to share. I do bring protein bars and but sometimes I’m not so good about eating them instead of the cookies. I generally try to avoid the snack table, but sometimes I don’t have the resolve to follow through. At this dance a woman had brought home made toffee with almonds and white chocolate chips. I admit I had a few small pieces. And I sampled MANY more of the baked goods than I needed.
I got back on track the next day with my eating, so the damage was minimized. That’s pretty much the best one can do after indulging like that.
It sounds like my Spark buddies might try dancing again in their area. I hope they do, and that they get hooked enough to meet me for the great dances in Ithaca. It would be fun to see them again in that context!
Tuesday, November 05, 2013
If you’re anywhere near Binghamton NY, come join me and DDOORN at a beginner-friendly contra dancing event happening next Saturday, November 9 in Binghamton. There will be LIVE MUSIC and lessons!
Contra dancing is sort of like square dancing crossed with swing. There is always fun live music. It’s super beginner-friendly and if you can walk, you can pretty much contra dance. Here's a video with people explaining why they like contra dancing and showing them dancing:
DDOORN hasn’t ever done it before, either, so you won’t be alone as a newbie.
I started contra dancing in March and wrote about it in a blog post www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
There are links to more videos of dancing and descriptions there.
Some of the things I love about contra is that it has helped me get used to physical contact with others, it's pulled me out into a more social scenario, and I'm getting used to how my "new" body feels and moves.
Plus it gives me a chance to channel my inner femme, with all of those twirly and sparkly skirts I find in thrift shops. Most of the time I'm a tomboy, so this is a lot of fun.
Here are details about the event
**Announcing the 9th annual KINDRED SPIRITS day of dance in Binghamton**
Contradance and English Country Dance, with workshops in Scottish and Scandinavian
Saturday, November 9, 2013 (detailed schedule below)
Trinity Church, corner of Main and Oak in Binghamton NY
Calling by: ADINA GORDON
FLARE EIRE (Randy Miller and Roger Kahle) for contra, and
HEY FOR THREE (Eileen Nicholson, Laurel Sharp, Charlene Thomson) for English
The special feature of Kindred Spirits is that contra and English happen in the same room, with smooth transitions back and forth.
Entire day $20 at the door
$12 per segment (afternoon or evening)
Under 25: $5, or $3 per segment.
For more information:
Contact Ross Geoghegan email@example.com 607-798-0787
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Schedule of Events
12:30 pm - Beginner First Step classes:
English Country Dance (Dining Room)
Contradance (Main Room)
1:00 - 4:00 pm - Afternoon Main Dance (English and Contra)
4:15 - 5:15 pm - Choice of Workshops:
Swedish Turning Waltz with Joan and Jim Savitt OR
Introductory Scottish with Terry Glasspool
5:15 - 7:00 pm - Potluck Dinner (coffee, tea & goodies supplied by Kindred Spirits 2013) or local restaurants.
7:00 - 7:30 pm - Couples Dancing
7:30 - 10:30 pm - Evening Main Dance (Contra and English)
Note: In the main dances there will be an equal mix of English and Contra.
Monday, September 30, 2013
Last year I kayaked with LESLIELENORE and her brother and two others in the canal between Seneca and Cayuga Lakes.
We had so much fun we decided to do it again this year. As you can see from the group shot, this year we had many more people with us, including two friends in a canoe, and one on a pack raft.
Here’s LESLIELENORE’s report about this year's trip:
There are lots of photos and a GPS track you can see here:
Based on our experience last year, we shortened the distance and planned to go from west to east, in the direction of the prevailing winds. This meant we spent almost all of our time in the sheltered canal and were less likely to fight a headwind the whole way.
As it turned out the wind was from the southeast but it was pretty mild. The day was lovely and warm and we saw only a few other boats out there. Lots of great blue herons, ducks, geese, and at one point a whole bunch of tiny fish were jumping all around us.
In Seneca Falls we stopped to stage a photo with the women in the group in front of a sign about the “Birthplace of Women’s Rights.” Carol’s husband was in the front of the canoe so he hid from view with only his knees showing. From this angle they look like my knees, which is pretty funny because I was behind the canoe in my kayak.
My left elbow has been complaining to me on long paddles over the past few months and yesterday was no exception. When I straighten my arm it helps a little. But I’m trying not to overdo it, so I don’t think I’ll be planning any 20-30 mile paddles anytime this year.
LESLIELENORE mentioned that my friend Suan brought a pack raft, and that he was having trouble keeping up until we started hitching paddlers up to him and towing him. It was a fun sight, watching a team of them plowing along. A few times she and I were up in front chatting and almost got run over as they churned past us.
Suan and I are going to Antarctica in January with a friend of his. He’s an avid birder and took a nice photo of an eagle nest near the end of the paddle.
Next weekend bf Harry and I will be going to a weekend contra dance in Buffalo and paddling with LESLIELENORE on Sunday. I promise to keep my PFD on during that one - I honestly didn’t know it bothered her.
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
While there are 17,156 members in the At Goal & Maintaining + Transition to Maintenance team ( teams.sparkpeople.com/maintaining ),
215 of them have joined a list to celebrate their maintenance anniversaries:
This same list also provides data for our Hall of Fame.
There is a whole lot of experience there, to learn from. Cumulatively we’ve kept off 12,983 lbs (6.5 tons) for 629 years!
Let’s put that into perspective.
What 6.5 tons looks like:
- a medium-sized Tyrannosaurus en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tyranosaurus_R
- a 40-ft whale shark www.theage.com.au/environment/conser
- 531 elephant tusks conservationbiology.net/research-pro
- a very large armored vehicle www.spacewar.com/reports/Smiles_and_
630 years is a pretty long time. 629 years ago the year was 1383. Here are some of the things that were going on 630 years ago:
- Europe looked something like this: www.euratlas.net/history/europe/1400
- Edward III (1327–1377) of England had just died. His claim to the throne of France resulted in the Hundred Years' War.
- Geoffrey Chaucer (c. 1343–1400?) had just written Canterbury Tales.
- Giovanni Boccaccio, Italian author (1313–1375) had just died.
- Francesco Petrarch, Italian poet and writer (1304–1374) had just died.
- Muslim world traveler Ibn Battuta (1304–1368/1377) had just died.
- Charles V (1338–1380) of France had just died.
- The Ottoman Empire hadn’t yet been formed (Constantinople wasn’t taken until 1453).
- Dominoes had just been invented in China.
- Löwenbräu brewery was founded in Munich
- Construction of the Bastille was completed in Paris.
Those 215 people employ a broad range of strategies and techniques for maintenance. The one thing we all have in common is that we’ve all had to figure out for ourselves how to balance managing our health and fitness with living our individual lives.
Among those 215 there are some folks who never track their food or weigh themselves, and there are people who log everything they eat and weigh themselves every day. There are people who exercise two hours every single day and others who don’t do exercise outside of their usual daily activities. We’ve got people who eat low-carb, or gluten-free, or on a paleo plan, or lots of complex carbs, or simply eat sensible portions of “normal” healthy foods.
What I love about this team is the sheer variety of perspectives and ways of managing to keep the weight off. And the affirmation that sometimes it just takes persistence to figure it out. Life throws everyone curve balls and there are lots of coping options to choose from. If you don’t know what to do, just ask, and you’ll end up with a thread with many different ideas and suggestions. Everyone is very generous and kind with their input around here.
Here is our Hall of Fame, in order of how long everyone has maintained. These data are current. In order to stay on this list folks have to check in once a year to verify and update their information.
I sometimes browse this list, just to see what people who have been managing this longer than I have are up to - how do they do it? Can I get a helpful idea, or inspiration or a needed dose of reality from their Spark Pages?
And now, I present to you a group of folks who collectively lost an entire Tyrannosaurus and have kept it off since 1383
Less than a year
If YOU would like to be on the list, just fill out this form, here:
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